People that have read this website before might remember previous rants on No Child Left Behind. Thanks to the Science Blog, I now have yet more ammunition against one of my least favorite federal programs.
Bruce Fuller, lead author and professor of education and public policy at the University of California, Berkeley, noted that the strong advances in narrowing racial and income-based achievement gaps seen in the 1990s have faded since passage of ‘No Child’. “The slowing of achievement gains, even declines in reading, since 2002 suggests that state-led accountability efforts—well underway by the mid-1990s—packed more of a punch in raising student performance, compared with the flattening-out of scores during the ‘No Child’ era,” he observed.
“We are not suggesting that ‘No Child’ has dampened the earlier progress made by the states,” Fuller said. “But we find no consistent evidence that federal reforms have rekindled the states’ earlier gains. Federal activism may have helped to sustain the buoyancy in children’s math scores at the fourth-grade level, seen throughout the prior decade.”
Give the article a peek. I find few topics more aggravating than the state of elementary and secondary education at the moment, especially in light of the fact that I actually feel compelled to send my daughter to private school for at least the first few years of her educational career. That costs money, and the idea of spending money at this level doesn’t quite drive me insane, but it HAS, along with child support, drove me to hold down two jobs and a freelancing position that I’ll have to share with you someday.
Come to think of it, having essentially three jobs might just be insane after all.